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An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America
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2015 Native American $1 Coin Design Candidates
by Darrin Lee Unser -

Design candidates for the 2015 Native American $1 Coins have been released by the United States Mint. Twenty different images have been unveiled with each one depicting a design emblematic of the theme, "Mohawk Iron Workers."

The 20 design candidates for the 2015 Native American $1 Coin (Larger images below)

Artists created these designs at the request of the U.S. Mint. They are now subjected to a selection process that will lead to one of them chosen as the final design for the 2015 coin.

This selection process will include reviews by both the Citizen’s Coinage Advisory Committee and the United States Commission of Fine Arts. Based on their recommendations along with those of U.S. Mint officials, the Treasury Secretary will make a final design selection. It is possible that slight changes may be made to the winning design.

The Mohawk Iron Workers theme is the latest in a series of annually changing reverses going back to 2009. The series celebrates the important contributions made by Indian tribes and individual Native Americans to the history and development of the United States, and it was authorized by the Native American $1 Coin Act, Public Law 110-82.

Mohawk Iron Workers describe the Mohawk people who helped construct skyscrapers and bridges throughout the United States. Their iron worker history dates back to the 1880's when they labored to build a bridge over the St. Lawrence River. Their work ethic and sure footing demonstrated on that bridge gained them a respected reputation which has led to generations of Mohawk Iron Workers.

Previous Native American $1 Coins showcased the following themes:

2009 – Three Sisters Agriculture
2010 – Great Tree of Peace and the Iroquois Confederacy
2011 – Great Wampanoag Nation
2012 – Trade Routes
2013 – Treaty with the Delawares

The unveiling of the 2015 design candidates comes just a few days before this year’s 2014 Native American $1 Coins are due for release and sale to the public in rolls, bags and boxes. Launching on March 20, the 2014 Native American $1 Coin features a reverse commemorating the native hospitality that helped to insure the success of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. Release details will be available on in a later article.

2014 Native American $1 Coin

Native Hospitality Ensured the Success of the Lewis and Clark Expedition

The obverse design remains the central figure of "Sacagawea," first produced in 2000, and contains the inscriptions LIBERTY and IN GOD WE TRUST.   The reverse design depicts a Native American man offering a pipe while his wife offers provisions of fish, corn, roots and gourds. In the background is a stylized image of the face of Clark's compass highlighting "NW." It includes the required inscriptions UNITED STATES OF AMERICA and $1.

Design Candidates for 2015 Native American $1 Coins

Below are line art images for all 20 candidate designs. Note that the candidates start at number two since a number one was not released to the public.

Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-02 shows two Mohawk Iron Workers exchanging a wrench with one sitting on an iron beam and the other dangling from a hoist   Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-03 offers a close-up of an iron worker with a representation of what appears to be Empire State Building behind him
Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-04 shows a single iron worker navigating an iron beam with a stylized city skyline in the distance   Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-05 shows construction in progress with a Mohawk worker up close and two workers up on the beams
Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-06 also shows construction in progress with one worker about to grab the hook from a crane and one balancing on the beams above   Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-07 shows a downward looking view of a worker along with the beam he is standing on and the scene underneath
Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-08 depicts four different Mohawk Iron Workers with two shown close-up and two on the beams behind   Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-09 has a single worker straddling a beam as it hangs from a crane. A cityscape can be seen in the background
Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-10 has a worker reaching for a cable and hook from a crane   Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-11 is nearly identical to design 10 with the exception of different placements of the crane cable and inscriptions
Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-12 also offers a worker reaching for a cable and hook but shows a towering beam behind   Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-13 includes a vast city landscape below a high-rise worker as he attempts to guide a beam into place
Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-14 shows a worker sitting on a beam and resting his foot on the hook of a crane   Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-15 is similar to design 14 with the position of the inscriptions changed
Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-16 shows an iron worker in full garb with one knee resting on a beam and his left hand gripping a line   Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-17 has a worker attaching a line to a crane hook. Behind, a woven Native American tapestry can be seen
Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-18 also offers a Native American tapestry with a close-up of an individual’s gloved hand and a crane hook   Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-19 offers a worker in the process of riveting a beam
Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-20 has one individual standing on a beam and one straddling it. MOHAWK IRON WORKERS is lettered into the beam.   Design Candidate 2015-NA-R-21 depicts the back of an iron worker as he stands and looks off into the distance




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